Tips for Transitioning from Fall to Christmas Decor

Easy tips and ideas for transitioning from fall to Christmas decor that include using natural elements, lanterns, pine cones, and more.

traditional living room fall to christmas decor transition

Ready or not, here come the holidays! I know some of you may not want to even think about them yet, but for those of you who are ready, I’ve come up with some simple ways to transition your decor from fall to Christmas. Nothing drastic…just easy ways to get the jump on Christmas decorating without waiting until after Thanksgiving. These ideas can be used now, and then tweaked after Thanksgiving with pops of red and fresh greenery.

Tips for transitioning from fall to Christmas decor

Tip #1: begin to put away all your pumpkins, gourds, and Halloween decor.

Even if you aren’t quite ready to let go of autumn, slowly begin to put away any decor that is strictly geared to fall. Replace those items with neutral winter or Christmas accessories. The grain sack cone trees I made several years ago work perfectly for this. Other ideas: wood pine trees & deer, wood or metal spheres, and ironstone.


traditional living room transition from fall to christmas

Tip #2: use neutral accessories that can be transformed with pops of red or green.

Neutral accessories don’t have to be plain or boring. Here are my favorite neutral ways to add texture and interest:

  • woven baskets
  • pine cones
  • preserved natural elements
  • moss balls
  • pomegranates, pears, apples (real or faux)
  • bowls and trays

candle lantern with pine cones

Tip #3: bring out the lanterns and candles.

Lanterns and candles are such an easy and beautiful way to add coziness to any space. They are especially wonderful during the holidays because they add just the right about of ambiance. Leave them neutral for now, and then add greenery, red berries, and ribbon for Christmas.

stack of neutral pillows

Tip #4: adjust the throws and pillows.

This is super easy and takes no time at all. If you have fall-themed soft furnishings, replace them with something neutral. Neutral doesn’t necessarily have to be white or ivory. Blues and grays can be considered neutral, if they are found elsewhere in your home. For example, I have blue everywhere, so I left out some blue pillows. I may or may not replace them with something red for Christmas…either way, I will be fine because the blue pillows fit in naturally.

grain sack christmas trees on shelf fall to christmas decor

Click for the cone tree tutorial.

Tip #5: put up your tree with just the lights.

This might be a controversial tip, but it’s a great way to get one big chore out of the way before Thanksgiving, especially if you put up a large tree. Not only does it give you more time to enjoy the tree, it also divides the task into smaller chunks. Put the tree up now, decorate it later. I actually didn’t come up with this idea myself. I saw it in the latest issue of Country Home magazine, and it really caught my eye. Not for everyone, but something to consider!

*Affiliate links included. Click HERE for my disclosure statement.

Shop & Source:

blue striped pillows | lanterns (similar) | cone tree tutorial | blue slipper chairs | blanket ladder | ivory throws |

I have one more transitional decor post and then I’m jumping right into Christmas. I want to get new and fresh holiday ideas to you in plenty of time so no one feels rushed…including me!

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  1. Susie Sweeton says:

    Hi Ann,
    How do you make tiny flags for your tree in this post???

  2. Hi Ann,
    I’ve been a fan of yours for quite some time. I enjoy your posts and ideas. I have been looking for your November screensaver calendar and I’m wondering if I missed it. I haven’t received your emails for the last few days. Hoping all is well with you!

  3. I love you heart for home and design.
    Thank you for sharing!

  4. I thoroughly enjoy your blog posts! You do such a nice job of putting them together
    and always have wonderful ideas. Thank you for sharing your creativity with us.

  5. Oh my, it isn’t winter yet but still fall here in the PNW. I celebrate one holiday at a time and Thanksgiving is the ending to our fall with a feast and remembering how we have been blest. The little grandsons enjoyed getting the Turkey and the pilgrims out yesterday.

  6. I enjoy doing a “phase in – phase out ” form of decorating. I’ve moved from having large trees to a bunch of smaller ones in a variety of types, such as aspens, pines, lit and unlit. Those trees actually stay up somewhere around my home, less decorations. Think of having a tiny forest on top of a bookshelf. So, those trees will start moving around the home.

    I found some towels with a winter theme of blue enamel ware and greenery, so I am thinking about doing that theme in the kitchen. I can keep the blue/white/green theme going throughout January. I also found a small, metal ornament tree, so this year, I’ll pull out my very old ornaments to display them.

    Since sending Christmas cards can be stressful, I’ve started sending out Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Happy New Year cards. Spreads out the time and effort. Tomorrow, the pecan farm opens up with the new crop, so I’ll be placing my order for friends and family.

  7. I think this is very timely! Thanksgiving is very late this year, and it makes so much sense to ease into Christmas decorating one step at a time. I am putting up Christmas this week-end. No tiny toe dip in the water – I am going full-tilt-boogy! I am doing it for myself and for my blog. To give me the peace of mind of being able to take my time, and for my blog to be able to create at least 3-4 Christmas posts. Hopefully my Thanksgiving guests will be appeased by a full-board Thanksgiving dining table – even if it is surrounded by surrounded by Christmas!

  8. This post made me chuckle.I just ordered a new flocked tree and put it up yesterday to make sure the lights worked !! It’s so pretty even without decorations.I am doing all neutrals again this year with lots of greens.Enjoy your decorating !

  9. Great tips!! I have been putting up my tree early for a few years now. Love it with just the lights 🌲

  10. Kathy Menold says:

    Last Christmas I put up my tree and decorated it with just a star on the top and lots of white lights. Loved it. Will see this year what my mood is for decorating. Some years I do very elaborate designer trees with a theme. Right now still enjoying my autumn decor till Thanksgiving.

  11. Good Morning Ann! As always, I look forward to your blog posts, especially at this time of year. I like the idea of putting up the Christmas tree with lights only, then adding the decorations at a later time. I still put up 2 full-size trees, one in our formal living room with my angel ornaments, and the other tree in our family room with all of our traditional/family treasures/kids’ special handmade ornaments that we’ve collected through the years. Angel tree goes up the weekend before Thanksgiving and the traditional tree after Thanksgiving. Think I might just get the angel tree up today with lights only, especially since Thanksgiving is late this year, which leaves us less time to prepare for Christmas. Thank you for all of your wonderful inspiration & ideas! Enjoy your Sunday!